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Scott DesJarlais
  • Pro-Life Congressman Pressured Mistress to Get Abortion

    After an avalanche of polls showing him leading nationally and in key battleground states, there's even more good news for Mitt Romney. Journalists have finally identified a politician with a more inconsistent position on abortion than the presidential candidate whose views have evolved more often than a antibiotic-resistant strain of gonorrhea.

    Consider this statement from Rep. Scott DesJarlais, a Republican congressman from Tennessee…

    "I have been a consistent supporter of pro-life values… Human life is sacred and taxpayer funding of abortion is counter to the values a great many Tennesseans hold."

    And contrast with this

    "You told me you'd have an abortion, and now we're getting too far along without one," DesJarlais tells the woman at one point in the call while negotiating with her over whether he'll reveal her identity to his wife. They then discuss whether he will accompany her to a procedure to end the sort of life the congressman now describes as "sacred."

    The woman happened to be his mistress and one-time patient; DesJarlais worked as a doctor before winning office in 2010.

    In the parlance of contemporary media coverage, this is "a very astute pivot toward the center." It's too bad that "Pro-Life except in cases where a mistress/patient needs to be talked into an abortion" is so hard to fit on a bumper sticker.

    Photo by Bill Clark/CQ-Roll Call Group/Getty Images

    Tags: Abortion, Scott DesJarlais, Tennessee